In Inkscape, what would be the best way to join the two nodes highlighted in red below? One is an end of the line, the other is the leftmost point on a circle (the horizontal line goes through the center of the circle).

Join line and circle

As to why, in case there are better suggestions - I wanted to make a glass, such as:


and I wanted to make it "proper":

  • Have the edges be joined together, so no gaps exist
  • Have the whole glass be a group that can be manipulated
  • Not complicate things too much (e.g. converting object to path wold make the circle harder to manipulate, right?)

I tried converting object to path and joining the nodes, but that did not work as expected - it kind of opened the path. Is there an easier way? Not sure if I'm doing this in the spirit of how it is usually done (from design standpoint), so feel free to comment on that.

  • Put smart guides on to make sure stuff "snaps" together
    – SaturnsEye
    May 23, 2014 at 11:05
  • @SaturnsEye care to make that an answer, if you are pretty sure it solves the problem?
    – benteh
    May 23, 2014 at 16:41

1 Answer 1


Align objects

To align a line to the center of an ellipse left side we can use the Object > Align and distribute tools.

  1. Align the top of the diagonal line to the vertically centered horizontal guide in the ellipse.
    Align top edges enter image description here

    enter image description here

  2. Align the left borders of the diagonal line and the ellipse.
    Align left edges enter image description here

    enter image description here

Snap to nodes or handles while drawing enter image description here + enter image description here

It may be faster if we snapped to paths, nodes or handles while drawing by switching on the snap nodes or handles tool.

  1. Snap to cusp nodes enter image description here

    This tool will snap the beginning of the path to a cusp node, which with an ellipse will be at the 4 outer rims. Snapping will be displayed while drawing with a message "Handle to quadrant point":

    enter image description here

  2. Snap to path intersections enter image description here

    On occasion we may rather want to snap on a path intersection (which could also be a temporary guiding line). Snapping will then be displayed with the message "Handle to path intersection".

    enter image description here

Whatever method we choose (we can activate multiple of snapping tools at the same time, shown each with it's specific message) our new line will start at the point we chose:

enter image description here

This point however will not remain on the node chosen on the object we snapped to until we group the object or chose Path > Union. The latter will of course make a Bezier of our circle.

  • Thanks Takkat for an elaborate answer! One thing - for the Align approach, you mentioned aligning to guide. I guess you meant the line I placed through the middle, is that correct? Is there a way to align to guide instead (cleaner than placing a line)? Also, when doing align, it aligns to the bounding box of the line, which is wider than the line itself - is there a way to align to the center or remove the empty space around the line? May 24, 2014 at 0:06
  • Guides (+ snapping) are helpful while drawing (second approach) but AFAIK there is no function to align objects to guides after we had drawn them. Regarding the bounding box: for a straight line, its upper left corner is identical to the starting handle of a line. It should therefore align straightforward. Did you try different caps in stroke properties?
    – Takkat
    May 24, 2014 at 7:19
  • OK, thanks Takkat - I think the problem was that the bounding box is relative to the page, so if the line is rotated, it will have a bounding box that's not tight around the line. May 24, 2014 at 12:00
  • Thanks to your answer learned about snapping. However it seems the snap is not "remembered" after deselecting. E.g. I snap the end of line to a circle, do some stuff, move the circle: The endpoint of the line is not moving along. I can easily resnap but it's still some work ~ is this more like a new question or do I miss some important checkbox somewhere? :)
    – nuala
    May 20, 2015 at 17:24
  • @yoshi: they will stay independent objects until we group or combine them. Be careful with combining circle paths as they will be converted to Beziers then. The spapped handle will still not stay on the path in case we move it.
    – Takkat
    May 20, 2015 at 18:31

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